Author Archives: Anonymous Lib Dem

The Bearing Group – helping to build a more liberal UK

In the wake of the electoral wipe out of the Liberal Democrats in May 2015 I was thoroughly disappointed. Disappointed by a national election campaign that was lacklustre and had lost the pulse of the British public. Disappointed by the voters so easily caught up in the scaremongering of a Labour/SNP alliance. Disappointed at those who ran to the Conservatives in blind hope of a stable economy that had been achieved not through Tory cuts but Liberal Democrat moderation.

In all honestly I lost faith in the ability of the Liberal Democrats to deliver the liberal Britain we need. The PR disaster was so staggeringly absolute that it seemed to sound the death knell for liberal politics at a national level for years to come. I was delighted that my expectations were exceeded by the surge of membership and a new leader who seems to have real change on his mind.

However, in that gap I decided to take a step myself – towards doing my best to personally shift public discourse back towards liberalism in a way not bound to the fortunes of political parties and the party political tactics which grow increasingly divisive as more parties join the fray. That initiative created The Bearing Group.

Posted in Op-eds | 34 Comments

What I learned when I cycled through Palestine

Rosina Credit Rugfoot PhotographyJust as tensions began to rise in Israel and the West Bank, I undertook a cycle and study tour of Palestine organised by Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP). We covered around 200km in five days in 40oC heat – at the time if it felt like the cycling version of the Sahara’s ‘marathon des sables’. I’ve read a lot about the situation in Palestine over the years but nothing could really prepare me for what I saw and experienced in that single week.

Over five days, the sponsored ride took us from Nablus in the North to the enclave town of Qalquilya then on to Ramallah. We then swept down into the Jordan Valley to Jericho and the Dead Sea, 300m below sea level to then climb the next day up to Hebron and back on the final day through Bethlehem to Jerusalem. We were never far from the tensions with Ramallah city going into ‘lock down’ with roads closed not long after we left and one of our group getting trapped in the Al-Aqsa mosque as violence grew in Jerusalem.

What we saw was the suffocating pressure faced by Palestinians in every part of their existence and the resolve needed just to do the day-to-day things we take for granted. The general sense of unease was apparent walking around Jerusalem where there was a heavy military presence and the Jewish civilian settlers were openly carrying hand guns in the street.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 3 Comments

Opinion: Gove’s history – Whiggish, patriotic and wrong, part 2

Britain’s history curriculum is about to return to the past. Michael Gove’s plan to change the way this important subject is taught in our schools “smells of Whiggery; of history as chauvinism”, according to Professor Tom Devine. In the second of a series of two articles (part one here), I look at the dangers of Gove’s desire to make history a patriotic subject.

History should be beyond ideology. History should be about the truth. It should be about looking at past societies, not judging them, and not attempting to own them. A patriotic view of history is equally as dangerous as …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , , and | 12 Comments

Opinion: Gove’s history – Whiggish, patriotic and wrong, part 1

Britain’s history curriculum is about to return to the past. Michael Gove’s plan to change the way this important subject is taught in our schools “smells of Whiggery; of history as chauvinism”, according to Professor Tom Devine. In the first of a series of two articles, I will look at the Whiggish side to Gove’s vision of history.

The Liberal Democrats are the political grandchildren of the Whigs, but we don’t need to share their interpretation of history. At the heart of Whig history is a sort of teleological view of the past, imagining that the ‘story’ of Britain is about …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 12 Comments

Opinion: Talking about my generation

Today something a little bit interesting will happen to me. I will become a member of a new generation of Liberal Democrats. Because from today, I will have spent longer as a member of the Liberal Democrats while they have been in Government than when they were simply the ignored party in opposition. When I first became involved in April 2009, a Liberal Democrat Government was unthinkable. Today it is reality. And it is a reality that some of us are now getting used to.

Many of the older members of the Liberal Democrats will have spent decades being ignored and …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 29 Comments

Recent Comments

  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 10th Jul - 8:01pm
    On the other hand, David Evershed, the Treasury supporting a higher proportion of the income of the poorest households than it has the income of...
  • User AvatarJoseph Bourke 10th Jul - 7:56pm
    Peter Martin, monetary policy and financial market stability is only one element of economic management. Fiscal policy is equally important but like monetary policy it...
  • User Avatarexpats 10th Jul - 7:00pm
    Manfarang 9th Jul '20 - 8:31am........................Yes indeed. There was no way of borrowing this country out of austerity following the fallout from the 2008 financial...
  • User AvatarJohn Littler 10th Jul - 6:29pm
    Yes, legalise, regulate and tax it. There is no case for doing it any differently. The case for banning the unbanable is usually based on...
  • User AvatarJohn Littler 10th Jul - 6:20pm
    I was not expecting to see Lancashire folk band from the 70's, the Houghton Weavers link on LibDem voice (Lloyd George) When marxist regimes get...
  • User AvatarJLittler 10th Jul - 6:06pm
    When Clegg took the big FB job, he was perfectly entitled to do the best for him and his family and it was not up...